Laura Nash's Reviews > The Ghost Map: The Story of London's Most Terrifying Epidemic - and How It Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World

The Ghost Map by Steven Johnson
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's review
Jul 02, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: own, non-fiction
Recommended for: people who like true life mysteries, history novels, or science.
Read in January, 2006

Okay, so this book might be getting five stars principally because I was interested in the topic beforehand-- in eighth grade I actually wrote The Ballad of John Snow for a project on famous scientific breakthroughs. But still, this book was a fantastic read. If you liked the book The Professor and the Madmen, this novel has similar detailed insights into the streets of Victorian London. The case is turned into a detective mystery of sorts, and real people come to life in the hospital cases. There are tons of facts that I still remember-- like the workers in a brewery were all spared from the epidemic, because they got free booze at work. Yes, the ending does get a little bit Wired Magazine on you, but overall the book is an excellent melding of history and science. What's not to like?

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